Popcorn is one of my favorite snacks of all time. My mom says my Grandpa Biel used to make it on Sundays as an evening snack when she was a little girl. My mom kinda carried this tradition on when we were little kids and just like my Grandpa she would make it on the stove.
As far as I'm concerned this is the only way to make popcorn at home. Forget about microwaves. Making popcorn on the stove is very simple. All you need is a large pot with a lid, some vegetable oil and popcorn kernels--I prefer white corn.
Put 3 tablespoons of oil in the pot with one kernel of corn. Cover (this can be easier if you have a glass cover so you can watch.) Once the kernel pops the oil is hot enough. You can now add about 1/3 of a cup of kernels (or a little more). Cover the pot again with the lid and shake the pot around to coat the kernels with oil. Every few minutes give the pot a good shake. Once most of the kernels have popped take it off the stove and transfer to a large bowl--like a vintage pyrex bowl for example!
If you are a Wheaton, Illinois local you will understand where this idea came from: I like to put a nice fine grain salt on my popcorn. I'm not sure if this can be purchased, I make mine at home by simply placing kosher salt into a blender and blending the salt to a fine grain. I make a lot of the salt at once and store it in an air tight container so I always have it on hand when I'm ready to eat popcorn.
You really don't need anything other than salt on this popcorn. It is delicious with just salt. However, sometimes I like to add different seasonings to my popcorn. Sometimes if we have people over and I need a host snack I will just put out four different kinds of popcorn. It looks pretty in different colored bowls in different sizes.
Here are a few of my favorites popcorn add-ons:
Spicy Popcorn- In a small bowl combine 2 tsps Chili powder, 1 tsp paprika, 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper (careful with this one!) 1 tsp kosher or sea salt. Sprinkle over popcorn and mix.
Cheesy Popcorn- Melt a few tablespoons of butter and pour over popcorn. Sprinkle fresh grated parmesan and salt. This was how my mom made popcorn growing up.
Tart Popcorn- Melt three tablespoons of butter. Pour over popcorn and drizzle two-three tablespoons of lemon juice. Add salt and mix. This one is my favorite.